A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens (1843)Read about another entry on the list.
Other than depictions of the nativity, there is no work of art that has furnished society so comprehensively with what we now think of as Christmas: the generosity of spirit, the personal rebirth through reflection, the gaucheness and sentimentality, even saying “Merry Christmas” to one another. In the same way that (to paraphrase Joey from Friends) the television gave us something to point our furniture at, A Christmas Carol gave us something to point our winters at. That it should be a novel which cemented the notion of Christmas as the grand secular holiday we now have (Jesus is mentioned only obliquely) is something even the most cynical fiction writer revels in.
A Christmas Carol is on Melissa Albert's list of four of the most memorable holiday gifts in fiction, Chrissie Gruebel's list of six top fictional holiday parties, and Tom Lamont's list of ten of the best time travelers.